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Tokyo's infection spike after Olympic postponement sparks questions

94 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI

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"We fear a situation where severe patients start dying when the medical system collapses"...Kato, the health minister, said

1) Surely that should be "if", not "when"?

2) People are already dying. Japanese crony leadership at its best.

18 ( +23 / -5 )

From Feb. 18 to March 27, Japan tested about 50,000 people, a daily average of 1,270 

This is not true.

As of yesterday, total tests performed 28,760 (source: https://covid19japan.com/)

As of March 27, according to MHLW, total tests performed 27,005 (source: https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/seisakunitsuite/bunya/newpage_00032.html)

25 ( +29 / -4 )

Sparks questions? The flames have already given the international community the answers.

18 ( +21 / -3 )

Surely the answer is to open all the schools.

16 ( +22 / -6 )

And today, as if on cue, one by one, prefectural governors have been strongly urging their citizens to not go to Tokyo, Osaka or Nagoya areas unless absolutely necessary.

For those in Tokyo, and who have somewhere less hectic to get to, I would suggest leaving as soon as you can, before the coming mass exodus.

Lockdown is coming.

10 ( +19 / -9 )

very simple as usual officials lied

22 ( +28 / -6 )

Every Japanese person I have spoken to recently thinks that the Japanese govt was hiding the true situation.

“Aki-Hiro Sato, a professor of information sciences at Yokohama City University, said in a recent report that Japan is now likely facing a second or third wave of the virus coming from Europe and the United States”

Okay, so the official line will probably be that Japan had the situation under control but the people from the US and Europe brought it in recently and finally Abe had to call for a lockdown. Perfect way to escape responsibility.

42 ( +46 / -4 )

So if things are so serious why are the schools reopening on Monday ? Is it serious or isn't it? This government is chaotic, i'll prepared and reactionary. Their poor judgement is encouraging worry and panic buying.

20 ( +22 / -2 )

Tokyo's infection spike after Olympic postponement sparks questions

Wow! What a surprise. Even up here in Iwate, where there are 0 infections. I don't believe that for a second,. People talk and talk about the coronavirus, but there is no social distancing and though official parties are off limits, people keep getting together after work for farewell parties. Clueless, absolutely clueless.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

So the day after they postponed their so precious olympics the Covid-19 magically appeared in Japan as well.

Are the Japanese people really so blind to still believe to theirs masters&rulers?

23 ( +30 / -7 )

Here in Australia, people are cottoning onto the fact that Japan may not be a trustworthy country, putting them in the same basket as China when it comes to transparency and trustworthiness.

The 'Japan brand' where people have previously associated Japan with efficiency, honesty and technological advancements is rapidly being tarnished by the likes of cover-up after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the Takata airbag fiasco, and now the apparent denial and downplaying of COVID-19 in Japan.

50 ( +57 / -7 )

The number of beds in Tokyo is absolutely crazy !!!!!!!!!!!

10 ( +12 / -2 )

@Hekleberry

Agreed completely. The Japanese people have also been aware of this for years. It's all a facade.

The government here could not have got it more wrong if they tried. That was evident right from the handling of the diamond Princess. And, it just continues to go down hill.

I think this will be the straw that finally breaks the camels back.

22 ( +26 / -4 )

Here in Australia, people are cottoning onto the fact that Japan may not be a trustworthy country, putting them in the same basket as China when it comes to transparency and trustworthiness.

Right. Abe & Co are wearing their credibility around their ankles and unless they are seen to take responsibility and get a grip of the situation - and fast - this sorry episode will reflect badly upon Japan Inc.

23 ( +26 / -3 )

Slightly off topic but it also makes you wonder about Tokyo's preparedness for a major earthquake. Those numbers regarding hospital beds look extremely low given the likelihood of even a moderate quake. I imagine Tokyo would have options to arrange field hospitals to cope with any disaster...or would they not?

18 ( +20 / -2 )

Libraries and community centers are closed, which is having a bad impact on older people who are being denied their usual chances to meet friends and stay active, but pachinko parlors, shopping malls, bars, restaurants, and offices all remain open for business as usual. Either this virus is dangerous, or it isn't. Which is it? Because, if it is dangerous, the government is endangering every one of us right now, and has been for a while.

19 ( +20 / -1 )

Should not surprise anyone who was here during the Fukushima aftermath. Cover ups and concealment is what the J government (all levels, not just national) does.

29 ( +30 / -1 )

Regardless of what the government says, this will forever go down in history as very suspicious... literally one day after postponing the games, one day!

21 ( +23 / -2 )

No kidding? Every poster on this site has been saying the obvious.

21 ( +24 / -3 )

Tokyo-mToday  04:44 pm JST

Libraries and community centers are closed, which is having a bad impact on older people who are being denied their usual chances to meet friends and stay active

The preferred method to stop the fatal spread among the most at risk, the aged. If they avoid death through contact infection at these locations they can be meet their friends and active later as survivors.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

because they fear massive testing will fill up beds that are needed for patients in severe need, and cause a collapse of medical systems.

How much more of this asinine BS do we have to put up with! Just because someone tests positive for the virus does not automatically mean they will need hospitalization!

Would be nice if the talking head doctors that are supporting Abe's policies would make this distinction!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

The current job transfer rush will only spread the virus, as will students going to university after the holidays.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

“We fear a situation where severe patients start dying when the medical system collapses, and we must prevent that situation,” Kato, the health minister, said Sunday on a talk show on public broadcaster NHK.

This just doesn't make any sense. If you "fear" this situation, then why you are not doing anything to prevent it.

Abe has said the government would secure 12,000 beds and 3,000 ventilators to prepare for a worst case scenario.

These numbers are the best case scenario, definitely NOT the worst.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Health Minister Katsunobu Kato said there is “absolutely no relationship” between the Olympic postponement and the number of confirmed cases."

Another textbook example of an Abe govt minister lying with a straight face despite the evidence overwhelmingly pointing in the opposite direction. LDP at their finest. How much longer will J public tolerate their BS?

17 ( +19 / -2 )

It was so obvious from the outset, if you havent seen it coming you were either blind or ignorant, but most people have been expecting it and prepared accordingly.

Sad for the old people and those with health issues, please try to help them and prevent spread to them they are the most vunerable and will find it difficult to continue with daily life as this thing spirals out of control while abe and co all stay safe and isolated in their little world. Probably smoothered in luxury and surrounded with fluff and BS.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Do what the govs of Europe are doing now. Prepare for thousands of new cases per day, construct temporary hospitals, protect health workers, close non-essential shops, the list goes on.

11 ( +14 / -3 )

Questions that were obvious BEFORE the delay, and were even more obvious AFTER the delay... you know, a week ago. Is that how long it takes for things here to kick in?

13 ( +15 / -2 )

"Health Minister Katsunobu Kato said there is “absolutely no relationship” between the Olympic postponement and the number of confirmed cases."

Yeah, and he also said the handling of the Diamond Princess was perfect, a day before admitting they let 27 people disembark without testing, and then a few days before quietly admitting it was not perfect (and that it is everyone else's responsibility, but not Japan's).

"Abe cited experts as saying a big reason for the recent rise is the growing number of cases that can't be linked and a jump in infections from abroad."

Even if this obvious lie is true, he was willing to invite tens of THOUSANDS from abroad for tourism, and even more for the Olympics but weeks away. Hmmm... But since that is not the case, that it is now the community transmission they're lying about, it is quite obvious to everyone with a brain and no vested interests (with selective reasoning and hearing) that there was most definitely a connection between the delay of the Olympics and the spike in cases, even if they are only COUNTING the infected more adequately; they still have the worst testing of the world.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

How much more of this asinine BS do we have to put up with! Just because someone tests positive for the virus does not automatically mean they will need hospitalization!

It's not that they will need it, it's becaus they will want it. even people with mild cases will think they need to be hospitalized.

and on top of that, every test that you do on someone that doesn't have it or is only mildly sick, wastes protective gear (face masks, rubber gloves, gowns, etc) and testing kits. in NYC and in different parts of america, they are rethinking the strategy of testing everyone since it is a tremendous waste of time and resources. they are now saying that if you think you are sick, then just assume you have the virus and self quarantine.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

From Feb. 18 to March 27, Japan tested about 50,000 people, a daily average of 1,270

This is not true. There is a confusion here between the number of tests and the number people tested. That's not the same. The number above is the number of tests which is higher than the number of people tested (so far 28,760) because people are tested multiple times.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

How ironic is THAT!! Begs the question..."The truth - or - not the truth"

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Sorry, but I'm still not buying the conspiracy theory until JT readers or opposition lawmakers explain it in more detail. What was the end game? Because surely the Prime Minister would know if they ignored the virus Japan would end up with piles of body bags well before the Olympics kicked off, and that would be an even bigger embarrassment. Also I don't see an exponential increase in the number of people being tested or infected so far, and it has been over a week since the games were postponed. So it is likely the number of infected driving up the testing, and not the other way around.

They underestimated people's will to go see flowers. Nothing more to say.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

Abe denied allegations that Japan had manipulated the numbers by limiting tests

How can he deny that? Thats's a fact, Japan testing is ridiculously low and the country is purposely keeping the number of tests low.

Many Japanese experts say testing is not for everyone and should be conducted selectively in an attempt to save hospital beds for those who really need them

That's non sense. Then how to know the extent of the infection in the country. Again the number of tests done in Japan is embarrassing low.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

You guys know what else will spark question next month?? Why Tokyo went into shutdown so late but since they will do that next month let's hold, with this question for now.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

With the Olympics now off, many are voicing suspicion that the numbers are rising because Japan suddenly has no reason to hide them

Ha ha, everybody knew it. Why the late wokeness? Interesting however, seeing Hatoyama attack Koike in open like this, rare to see Japanese do that

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Either the government officials are all incompetent or they were telling an untruth? Its a question.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I wrote a comment some days ago that Tokyo may want to follow suite and use the South Korean tactics as an example to follow for containment measures. To my surprise I was given many negative marks on this. But the rest of the world is talking how about how successful South Korea has had success keeping the virus at bay.

However, The South Koren's are skeptical as well that the country may have resurgence in cases. Tokyo will go into full lock down possibly? How is that even possible? Maybe is should. Maybe it It has too. Tokyo leadership must do the right thing for the good of country and other cities and areas too. It just makes sense. Japan is just to well traveled with trains, buses, Air travel. The country is just plain small with so many inhabitants. Its giant petry dish for the virus to grow and spread.

Or am I am I over paranoid here? Could be. I am seeing Japanese not wearing masks. I went in to an AEON last night to get the usual half price off bento as I am single. (Kurume) Men were not washing hands after using rest rooms. Coughing sneezing everywhere. I am scared. I have kids in Japan with there Mother. I work for a type of company with very kibishi old fashioned Japanese CEO that would not close his company if the world was ending! Seems all business as usual. I really think the the Japanese are going through this with blinders on. Whats going to happnen when the country has tsunami spike levels? I fear that coming. Don't you?

Anyways,

Interesting read on South Koreans tactics here.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/23/world/asia/coronavirus-south-korea-flatten-curve.html

12 ( +13 / -1 )

The biggest problem in Japan is the complete absence of independent reporting. When you combine that with a population that rarely, if ever, openly questions what the "news" networks dish out, you end up with a deadly concoction of lies and cover-ups. If there was ever a time for Japan's media to take a stand and do some serious & unbiased journalism, this is that time. Unless and until that happens, nothing will change.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

We can fight the virus together but don’t put the wool over the public’s eye and treat us like fools.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

Hope the Japanese people realise that their health was sacrificed in order for vanity projects by Abe and Koike could still go ahead.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

Abe cited experts as saying a big reason for the recent rise is the growing number of cases that can't be linked and a jump in infections from abroad.

Now, why would there be a growing number of cases that can't be linked? Would it be because government inaction has resulted in the virus spreading so much it's now impossible to link cases together? The situation is clearly out of control.

This is totally on Abe and his government. They should've acted in mid-Feb when this all started. Even if we are kind and say they didn't know what they were dealing with, literally every day since then events around the world have shown very clearly what we are dealing with. And still they haven't acted.

Again, just for clarity...

The timeline:

• Nov 29 - First known case in China.

• 21 Jan - Chinese authorities first publicly concede there was human-to-human transmission.

• End of Jan to start of Feb - Chinese New Year.

• Japan (in particular Tokyo and Hokkaido) is the 2nd most popular destination for Chinese tourists during this time.

• Mid-late Feb - First spike / cluster of virus cases in Hokkaido.

• Late Feb - Diamond Princess cruise ship.

• Feb 23 - infected passengers let off the ship and made their way home via public transport - some traveling through central Tokyo.

• Feb 23 to March 24 - Not a lot happens in terms of prevention. Schools 'close' but some kids keep going to school. Generally business as usual. Government keeps insisting the Olympics are going ahead as planned.

• March 24 - Olympics cancelled

• March 28 - Abe calls for heightened vigilance against the surge in COVID-19 cases in Japan.

I'd love to hear Abe explain what specifically has happened in the last few days to cause this surge in cases? Why the sudden jump in numbers and the sudden increase in serious concern?

This virus has been in Japan since Chinese New Year in late Jan-early Feb. When the first cluster was found in Hokkaido (skiing tourists?), it's reasonable to presume there were similar numbers in Tokyo too. The reason clusters weren't found in Tokyo is just a matter of the numbers in relation to the population. As no action was taken, it was left to spread around Tokyo and beyond. Infected people were let off the cruise ship and allowed to travel home on public transport - so it clearly spread in late Feb too. For more than a month, no serious or appropriate action was taken, so it has been left to spread.

The numbers have clearly been suppressed. People haven't been tested. Many reports state people with symptoms being diagnosed with bronchitis, hay-fever, pneumonia, influenza, and told to go home - only for them to return to hospital a second or third time before they are finally diagnosed with COVID. While the rest of the world is quarantining, practicing social distancing and teleworking, Japan has barely changed its behaviour.

If this is now a surge, its because of the non-action of the government since mid-February. If Abe thinks today's numbers constitute reason to be more serious, then think about what the real numbers actually show - because the actual numbers will be many times more than what are being officially reported.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

I totally believe our leaders.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

Finding clusters does not mean that is when it first arrived. It means that within a large number of already infected people a number of them suddenly got very sick compared to all the others in areas not even close by did not get seriously sick.. This thing has been around a for a long time since last Fall.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

it's pretty obvious to anyone who have a single braincell that things aren't tallying up... as i watch the world goes up in metaphorical flames everyday, the normality of japan where ppl are acting like as if the virus dont exist just makes me feel like i am existing in some weird bubble. and a lot of times, no make that most of the time, it feels like a news blackout abt the corona situation in this land of false calm...

i live in the corner of Namba, and my area are mostly just izakayas (also loads of ppl) and such and a really huge pachinko. i walked past it yesterday on my way to the conbini and saw loads of people inside... majority no masks, and sit so close together... there are no urgency whatsoever.. so much for social distancing

the snow in kanto was also a really ominous sign to me... and when i look at twitter, ppl are tweeting abt going out to make snowman... like, what part of stay home do they not get???

today, with shimura ken's death, RIP i hope it can be a wakeup call.. koike is calling a conference tonight at 8... i am also looking to see what our Osaka governor is planning to do...

these politicians need to stop living in denial. self restraint isnt going to work. they gotta make that 外出禁止 happen. its already bad enough a situation right now

i'm alone here, and if anything happen, i wont even be able to see my family that's thousand of miles away. i never really thought much abt it, but it hits me harder than ever right now. am i being melo? maybe, but it is something to think about.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Abe cited experts as saying a big reason for the recent rise is the growing number of cases that can't be linked and a jump in infections from abroad. 

Anybody with a functioning brain will know that there are thousands of unknown cases because the trains are running packed with people, pachinkos are operating, social distancing is not practised etc

Easy to blame inaction, ineptitude to those arriving from abroad.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

The culprit of the extremely low number of tests is the Japan Medical Association (Nihon Ishi Kai, JMA). The JMA actually monopolies the Japanese medical industry. The JMA considers that coronavirus mass testing would require a lot of efforts of Japanese doctors, but is not profitable at all. Japanese doctor fear that they would be overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients as in Italy and Spain. Money matters the most here. This is why the number of tests is so low but the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, under influence of the NIID and the JMA, seemingly tries to suppress it. Remember that this kind of bureaucratic selfishness once started the Pacific war (WWII), destroying the entire Japan. Actually this coronavirus fiasco tracks back to the WWII and the Unit 731, and of course linked with Abe and the LPD.

https://dot.asahi.com/wa/2020031100065.html (in Japanese)

https://togetter.com/li/1476075

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

Japan can make 12,000 tests per day, 350,000 per month.

People across the globe are asking the same questions. Why?

11 ( +11 / -0 )

nakanoguy01: It's not that they will need it, it's becaus they will want it. even people with mild cases will think they need to be hospitalized.

It is true that people in Japan tend to go to the hospital/clinic much easier than most countries. If people follow the same logic with covid19, it will clog up the system in record time. In most countries people are told to wait it out at home if it's not "life threatening" level, and Japanese people would have a really hard time accepting this, since they are used to being able to visit hospital even if you have a normal "kaze".

4 ( +4 / -0 )

If Japanese people think for the better of their country and not the “shoganai” thinking, this could start a revolution against its government. It’s painfully obvious that the gover Is hiding the true data from its citizens.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Appalling at "best". Perhaps criminal.

18 ( +19 / -1 )

Moderator: Readers, please refrain from using the word "criminal." It is inflammatory and there is no evidence to support the claim.

Abe denied allegations that Japan had manipulated the numbers by limiting tests, or combined COVID-19 deaths with other pneumonia fatalities. “I'm aware that some people suspect Japan is hiding the numbers, but I believe that's not true,” he said. “If there is a cover-up, it will show up in the number of deaths.” He said doctors told him that pneumonia patients with COVID-19 can be detected by CAT-scan or X-rays.

Are you kidding me? NHK reported less then three weeks ago that the hospitals were only testing 3 of every 67 patients due to government regulations.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

From Feb. 18 to March 27, Japan tested about 50,000 people, a daily average of 1,270 

This is not true.

As of yesterday, total tests performed 28,760 (source: https://covid19japan.com/)

As of March 27, according to MHLW, total tests performed 27,005 (source: https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/seisakunitsuite/bunya/newpage_00032.html)

What has happened to this lovely country it is really sad to think it has fallen below the CCP.

Why the blind obsession to make the country look special and unique.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Critical point here is that during the last long weekend holiday on March 20th, 21st, 22nd, there was almost no limitation on gatherings, socilalizing and distancing esp outdoors. Then & now many gyms and fitness centers are still open having never been closed.

Hence, the following week we start to see a big jump in cases after the normal incubation period.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

From Mainichi (a more liberal-leaning daily and Abe-critics)

ファクトチェック: 新型コロナ「五輪延期後に検査急増」は本当か 「感染隠蔽」説を検証すると…

https://mainichi.jp/articles/20200328/k00/00m/040/090000c

Sorry, above you can't see for free without subscription.... a summary: the daily testing amounts haven't largely changed before and after the postponement was officially announced.

Using the common sense, you can't hide real numbers, as many stakeholders (monitoring each other) are involved in the process. Japan is not like China where cover-ups are likely.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Experts have found a rise of untraceable cases mushrooming in Tokyo, Osaka and other urban areas — signs of an explosive increase in infections.

Really?

Is it because nobody in government has bothered to trace infection vectors.

Personally, I know a virus victim but nobody has checked in with me concerning contact.

Japan needs to move a little faster or there’ll be more clusters and more rampant infections...

5 ( +5 / -0 )

@HBJ... excellent comment / well detailed and spot on!

@SJ...really interesting point of view and you’ve outlined some good facts regarding ignorance and failure to test the infected!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Aki-Hiro Sato, a professor of information sciences at Yokohama City University, said in a recent report that Japan is now likely facing a second or third wave of the virus coming from Europe and the United States”

Since when is a guy that teaches IT an expert on infectious diseases?

Oh, I get it....he is a 'yes man expert ' on Abe,s panel out to push government,s narrative.

Meanwhile people like Kentaro Iwata who are experts but dont toe Abe,s line get bullied in the background.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

I live in Tottori one of the few places with no reported cases. There was a report today that the sanddune is bustling with tourists, as we have no cases. This is the time to shut down the place and tell the tourists your not welcome at this time. Containment is out of the question, but slowing it down is the only thing we can do, and unless we do and those in charge realize that, we will end up with it being way out of control.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Using the common sense, you can't hide real numbers, as many stakeholders (monitoring each other) are involved in the process. Japan is not like China where cover-ups are likely.

Yea, cover ups not possible. Lol

Sakura no kai shredding of documents, moritomo falsfication of data, tokyo olympic bid documents missing, should I continue ?

I guess it doesn't fall under cover-up, it is normal practice.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Saving lives is more important.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

At this point rather than argue over the missteps up until now (which we can all agree there are many)...

It's time to take real action. No where else in the world crowds trains and subways like Tokyo.

If you think 2 digit daily increases in infections are bad, without REAL measures, it's going to become 3 digits, then maybe even 4, very very soon.

Stay home. It's the single best way to curb the spread.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Hey Cruisin,

you're right, but we can't stay home because we'll lose our jobs, because the Government won't (can't) call a State of Emergency, so our bosses say, 'yes, stay home by all means, but we won't pay you.'

5 ( +5 / -0 )

um... we knew this all along. The numbers were being kept quiet whilst the Olympics were dangling ahead of us. Now there’s no reason to hide the dark truth.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

2021 Olympics

starting July 23.

Now confirmed.

Heat wave concerns again, Sapporo marathon.

(if they even happen....)

6 ( +6 / -0 )

"""former Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said in a tweet. “The coronavirus has spread while they waited. (For Tokyo Gov Yuriko Koike) it was Olympics first, not Tokyo's residents.”"""

Mr Abe you really STINK now, as they say in Japanese HIDOOOOOOOOOOOOOi. what a disgusting thought.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

this lack of leadership is akireta monda. And I would suggest nefarious

5 ( +6 / -1 )

What let to the calling off of the games so rapidly was, in my opinion, the refusal of mayor athletes themselves and national committees to attend under the present circumstances.

No politician can have Olympics without athletes.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Tora

For those in Tokyo, and who have somewhere less hectic to get to, I would suggest leaving as soon as you can, before the coming mass exodus.

Really, really bad advice. You're basically advocating spreading the virus to areas that aren't as infected. Rural areas often have a worse doctor-to-patient ratio, and you're going to get the best treatment from a practioner that knows you. Experts world-wide are recommending you stay in your local area.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

3000 ventilators isn't enough

4 ( +4 / -0 )

No da-kine Elmhurst Hospital in Tokyo!

Compared to the countries of many critics here in JT, Japan is actually doin an excellent job!

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

The IOC decision wasn't even based on the charade of official numbers coming out of Japan. To anyone looking at the situation globally they made the only decision they could without being unimaginably reckless. A lot of disconnects here that need to start seeing the light of day.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Under the current law, COVID-19 is designated as an infectious disease and whoever tests positive is routinely hospitalized, but a new government guideline would allow a triage of patients, which would include self-quarantine at home.

If that's true, then it's obvious that there will be a natural bias against testing, because hospitals would fill with up with people who may be very infectious but do not need hospital care. Such people should be self isolating at home. The only Covid-19 positive people who should be in hospital are those with advanced symptoms.

Further to the question of what the government can and cannot do, there was an article in the Japan Times yesterday that asked the question of what emergency powers the Japanese government actually has. It sounds like it is largely powerless and that the prefectures will have to take a lead on what can be done. Remember that the Japanese constitution was drafted by the Americans. I find it hard to imagine that it includes extensive martial law-type powers just waiting for the next militarists to come along.

I'm no fan of the Japanese government, far from it in fact, but you have to understand the boundaries with which they are operating. That hospitalization law is crazy and must be changed immediately.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

118 beds for infectious diseases patients in Tokyo with a third of them occupied.....what the heck has Abe, Kato and the rest of the LDP clown been doing for the past 2 months apart from sitting on their ass setting up one expert panel after another and holding meetings...make some decisions and get things happening ffs....useless.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Nobody has mentioned, only 13 confirmed cases in Tokyo today.

So much for the conspiracy theory.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

There is nothing to be questioned about. Let us wait for a few more days to see it is just a normal spike or it is a real crisis.

A hasty judgment is a first step to recantation, as simple as that.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm sure they're continuing to test only 1-3% of those contacting the help line because they have symptoms. I got the impression from my regular doctor that they don't want to test because if you test positive, they have to admit you to hospital, in one of the few infectious disease beds. In reality, it seems most people (80%~) who have the virus have mild symptoms.

It would be much more logical to test all those with symptoms so we have accurate numbers, and ditch the requirement of hospital admission. Only admit those whose condition is serious, and enforce home quarantine for those with mild symptoms.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I'm sure they're continuing to test only 1-3% of those contacting the help line because they have symptoms.

There are certain conditions you have to meet, including having a fever for 4 days. The info is even available from a link at the top of JT.

It would be much more logical to test all those with symptoms so we have accurate numbers, and ditch the requirement of hospital admission.

They would have to go to a hospital then, when most likely they'd be self-isolating. And we've already seen how most of the cases recently were spreading in a hospital. So no, not necessary more logical. They could set up drive-though test centers, but even then people without a car would never get tested.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Nobody has mentioned, only 13 confirmed cases in Tokyo today."

As another poster suggested yesterday....we would get a day or two of lower numbers ( they tend to be lower after the weekend, wonder if all the testing labs are operating at capacity on a 7 day basis? ..anyone know? ) before a big spike that will be used by Abe,s experts to recommend the state of emergency around mid to late this week.

I tend to agree thats how it will go down....lets see in a few days.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Only 13 cases today because those are from people sick enough to brave the snow on Sunday. Even NHK has said tomorrow will be worse as the more patients start showing up. There’s a one day delay in test results.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

As another poster suggested yesterday....we would get a day or two of lower numbers ( they tend to be lower after the weekend, wonder if all the testing labs are operating at capacity on a 7 day basis? ..anyone know? ) before a big spike that will be used by Abe,s experts to recommend the state of emergency around mid to late this week.

I tend to agree thats how it will go down....lets see in a few days.

Yeh, you're right I jumped the gun. On TV they said it was due to hospitals being closed on Sunday.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

There are certain conditions you have to meet, including having a fever for 4 days. The info is even available from a link at the top of JT.

Even a 5 year old wont come up with pathetic conditions like this. No other country has such conditions. Even WHO recommended to test all potential carriers. And the same 5 year old can tell you that all potential carriers does not equate to every citizen.

They would have to go to a hospital then, when most likely they'd be self-isolating. And we've already seen how most of the cases recently were spreading in a hospital. So no, not necessary more logical.

This is such an asinine comment. If you test positive and don’t have symptoms, why be quarantined in hospital when you can self isolate at home, like what most other advanced nations are doing. The hospital is only for those that are critically ill. I find it so outrageous that the Japanese keep using this as an excuse to limit testing.

They could set up drive-though test centers, but even then people without a car would never get tested.

Unbelievable excuse. What about the walk through booths similar to what South Korea introduced?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Japan's model: Testing everybody is unrealistic and paradoxically dangerous. Focus on saving people from death - the ultimate goal of medical institutions.

Italy/USA model: Test! test! test! Knowing facts is the starting point to fix any problem. Be honest and scientific.

I really do not know if Japan's model of dealing with this virus works better or worse than the other.

I will judge by counting deaths.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

I really do not know if Japan's model of dealing with this virus works better or worse than the other.

I don't know if anyone knows yet. One thing this pandemic will do is provide a LOT of data which will give the epidemiologists years of work to pour over, at which point they will evaluate the responses of different countries to see which responses were most effective, and why.

Unfortunately, it will take a few years to come up with proper evaluations and plans for future pandemics.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Even WHO recommended to test all potential carriers

WHO have done nothing useful and are a big joke so really who cares what they say anymore.

This is such an asinine comment. If you test positive and don’t have symptoms, why be quarantined in hospital when you can self isolate at home, like what most other advanced nations are doing. The hospital is only for those that are critically ill. I find it so outrageous that the Japanese keep using this as an excuse to limit testing.

So you are saying people without symptoms should be tested now? You're not making any sense. I'll just ignore that. And people with light symptoms should go and get tested, just so they can go back home and isolate, which is what they were going to do in the first place!?

Unbelievable excuse. What about the walk through booths similar to what South Korea introduced?

Good luck with that happening. SK were prepared because of the MERS outbreak a few years ago. Stop acting like Japan is doing far worse than every other country, when many of them have body bags piling up and nowhere to put them.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Itbis a National Scandal of enormous proportions. This portrays lack of transparency here in issues relating to public health. Very scandalous.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

WHO have done nothing useful and are a big joke so really who cares what they say anymore. 

Unbelievable. Again, I emphasize, even third world countries don’t rely on such pathetic criteria.

So you are saying people without symptoms should be tested now? You're not making any sense. I'll just ignore that.

Up to 40% of people carrying the virus do not show symptoms at all. For people that have symptoms, there’s an incubation period of average 5 days during which they show no symptoms. In both cases, people can still shed the virus left right and center even when showing no symptoms. Comprehende?

And people with light symptoms should go and get tested, just so they can go back home and isolate, which is what they were going to do in the first place!? 

Which is exactly what Japan is not doing because they aren’t testing people with light symptoms but those with fever for 4 consecutive days, and even then, in some cases being rejected for testing. And because they aren’t being tested, they don’t know they have the corona, and therefore they won’t even self isolate.

Good luck with that happening. SK were prepared because of the MERS outbreak a few years ago.

So, is Japan acting feebishly now to prepare for the next outbreak? It’s a pathetic excuse. Extreme periods require extreme measures, not hold onto some self pride and ignore working methods developed by your arch rivals.

Stop acting like Japan is doing far worse than every other country, when many of them have body bags piling up and nowhere to put them.

Dear oh dear. With this kind of logic, I really worry about the future of Japan.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Do what the govs of Europe are doing now. Prepare for thousands of new cases per day, construct temporary hospitals, protect health workers, close non-essential shops, the list goes on.

You should not generalize about the "govs of Europe". Different European countries are taking very different approaches, from the very relaxed Dutch policy to the draconian Italian one. Which one do you want Japan to copy?

On the plus side, the virus is finally demonstrating for everybody the danger of uncontrolled open borders, of globalism, of centralized undemocratic bureaucracies, and in particular of dependency on China. Maybe something good comes out of it.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Japan falsifying data to suit their agenda..... Oh no, say it ain't so?! This has NEVER happened before, right????

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Agree with the writer regarding the statement; With the Olympics now off, many are voicing suspicion that the numbers are rising because Japan suddenly has no reason to hide them.

It could be and I do not rule this out of possibilities.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Have any of you been following the Tokyo official website for COVID-19? I will advice you do, personally I’m against this mass unnecessary testing, if you feel you are sick and suspect it’s covid, stay home, call the relevant health service number for help, you will eventually be tested if your situation is covid related, they are now using their resources well, the idea of mass infection out there has no basis, you can’t hide this for even 3 days , looking at what’s happening out there, people are so quick to bash but these guys aren’t that stupid, you way your options and chose the best, so far their strategy haven’t created the mass fatalities we are seeing in other countries who only recently got introduced to the virus, the chaos that these mass testing will create is counterproductive, reported new cases in Tokyo dropped to 13 yesterday what’s important is for them to use enough resources to track possible contacts to any case and stop it from spreading, it it requires a lock down I’m sure the will, but for now I applaud them for the good job done,

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Many Japanese experts say testing is not for everyone and should be conducted selectively in an attempt to save hospital beds for those who really need them. “Tests are primarily for people who are suspected of having the virus, and should be based on clinical judgment by doctors,” said Shigeru Omi, a former World Health Organization public health expert who is on the government-commissioned panel.

Finally, a hint of sanity.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

A lot of you guys in this comment section don't seem to realize that unlike the Chinese CCP government, the Japanese government isn't lying on purpose, but they are simply hiding their heads in the sand and practicing active self-deception, just because they are not prepared to face the reality with the related embarrassment and pain. The government simply doesn't have the guts to find out the truth even for itself (i.e. if I don't look, I will not see....and so I can live happily ever after, in peace).

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I don't think anybody can blame the Japanese government on this. After all even the IOC was dead set on still having the Olympics commenced on set date and only after international pressure did it concede to postpone. No country can be bleeding money on both ends. Even China wouldn't have hosted its 2008 Beijing Olympics if there was a simultaneous virus outbreak in Wuhan back then.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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